Eau Claire, Wis. (Blugolds.com) – Jose Quintana, who is entering his fourth season as a volunteer assistant coach for the UW-Eau Claire wrestling program, is the 2019 recipient of the Joe Merten Coaching Award.
The award will be presented at the UW-Eau Claire Blugold Hall of Fame banquet Friday, October 11. The banquet is open to the public and tickets, which are $25, can be obtained by contacting the UWEC Alumni Office at 715 836-3266 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The awards program will begin at 6:30 p.m. preceded by a social at 4:30 p.m. and dinner at 5:30 p.m.
The Joe Merten Coaching Award is a $500 cash stipend available to any part-time assistant coach, graduate assistant or community coach in any of the 22 sports in the Blugold sports module. The award was named to honor Blugold basketball Hall of Famer Joe Merten who died in 2008. According to the family's criteria for the award, the recipient "shall demonstrate a deep commitment to the student athletes and embody a passion for lifelong learning and the 'love of the game.'"
Quintana, who competed collegiately for UW-Oshkosh, became associated with the Blugold wrestling program in 2016, a year after Tim Fader took over as head coach. An admission counselor on campus, the Burnsville, Minnesota native has been instrumental in the Blugolds' academic study table, according to Fader. He said Quintana also does individual training and technique with the middle weights. Quintana competed in the 149 and 157 weight classes while at Oshkosh. He was conference runner-up at 149 as a senior when he posted a 22-8 season record. He registered 88 wins during his career with the Titans. He earned a liberal arts degree from UWO with an emphasis in Spanish.
Fader also pointed out that Quintana has a great deal of experience with the Olympic styles of wrestling and started the Blugold Wrestling Club in the spring of 2018. He will also start a new event next spring in the Olympic styles of competition. Fader says that Quintana enjoys the development and mentoring of Blugold student athletes. The Blugolds have had eight Scholar All-Americans since Quintana joined the program.
The previous Merten award winners were Kimamo Wahome, Amanda Zenner, Amanda Schultz, Liz Germonprez, Paul Conlin, Erik Strand, Jeremy Deterville, Seth Hoyer, Marcie Schwamberger, Elroy Perkin and John Peterson.